Tawanda is a Zimbabwean-born dancer, artist-scholar who’s work revolves around scholarly research and writing alongside practice-based research through interdisciplinary creative collaboration. Current research and creative practice investigates transnational African identities, comparative African diaspora studies, contemporary African theatrical dance, Africana religions/spiritualities and philosophy, postcolonial modernities, embodied research methodologies. He holds a B.A. in Human Ecology from the College of the Atlantic, an M.F.A. in Dance from Southern Methodist University, and works with storytelling, performance art, and visual art (most recent exhibition was at the the William H. Thomas Gallery in Columbus, Ohio 2017), and creative writing (first novel Baobabs in Heaven published in 2010). He was interim artistic director of Tumbuka Dance Company in Zimbabwe (2011), before leaving to pursue Ph.D. studies. Tawanda is currently a doctoral candidate in the Department of African American and African Studies at The Ohio State University.
Tawanda has conducted solo performances at the Harare Festival of International Arts (HIFA), the Stonington Opera House (Maine), The Black Academy of Arts and Letters (Texas), the Dallas Museum of Art, The Bathouse (Texas), Schoodic Arts (Maine), The REACH performing center (Maine), Harare Polytechnic College (Zimbabwe). He has performed in works by Alison Chase of Apogee Arts, Mark Dendy, Israeli contemporary performance artist Renana Raz, the French Compagnie Turak Théâtre d’objet in Lyon, Harold George of Dunia Dance, and Shani Collins, and Myriam Baig. He has had the pleasure of creative collaborations with perfroming artists CoCo Loupe and Nicole Garlando, dancer Jennifer Mabus, photographer Craig Bortmas, contemporary visual artist Tapfuma Gutsa, Southern Methodist University’s World Music Ensemble, BL Lacerta Improvisational Ensemble, carnivalesque artist Lila Roo, educational performance ensemble Camarata Dallas, environmental artist Barbara Andrus, decolonial dramaturg Patrice Niambana, and Costa Rican choreographer Oscar Chanis.
In addition lecture demonstrations, Tawanda has presented papers at the conferences of the Dance Studies Association (formerly CORD and SDHS), and the National Association of Ethnics Studies (NAES). He has extensive experience teaching studio and lecture courses, along with facilitating sensorimotor workshops, dance master classes, and interdisciplinary creative practice in K-12, colleges, university and community settings. This has seen him facilitate learning at The Ohio State University, College of the Atlantic, Misouri Valley College, Southern Methodist University, Stephens College, Booker T. Washington High School for the Performing Arts, the Break Through Collaborative, Dallas Black Dance Theatre, Schoodic Arts, Mount Desert Elementary School, REACH Performing Arts Center, the Dance Foundation Course in Zimbabwe and more.